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Showing posts from January, 2015

Antebellum Awakening

Antebellum Awakening is the second book in the YA fantasy Network Series by Katie Cross.

I would strongly recommend that readers read Miss Mabel’s School for Girls before this – and warn that this review will contain inevitable spoilers for the first book. Therefore I recommend not reading this review until you’ve read Miss Mabel’s. Feel free to read my review of that first book here.

Half numb from the events at the end of Miss Mabel’s School for Girls and in deep mourning for her mother, Bianca finds herself suddenly at Chatham Castle – her father’s break in tradition in having a family known by all – and many not with a favorable outlook.

Though she’s surrounded by her friends, nothing can distract her from the uncontrollable chaos her powers have become since her mother’s murder. She’s putting everyone is danger by just being present.

Yet the most daunting thing is that she only has six months left before her seventeenth birthday – the day that her Inheritance Curse will kill her,…

Violet Eyes

Violet Eyes is a YA retelling of The Princess and the Pea, one of the Once Upon a Time books, by Debbie Viguie.

Contented, simple farm girl Violet’s life is made more complicated when she and her family take in a wounded stranger – who turns out to Prince Richard of the realm.

Once he is returned to full health, he’ll have to head to the kingdom after a year abroad locating princesses for his parents, the king and queen, to enter into a competition for his hand in marriage.

Reluctant to do such a thing, Richard instead finds himself intrigued by Violet’s straightforward, strong personality and they quickly fall in love.

Yet in order to have a chance to be together, Violet will need to compete against the many princesses in odd, enigmatic tests that range from the ridiculous to the dangerous…

Violet Eyes moves swiftly, as it sort of has to since it’s just shy of 200 pages.

I’m never a fan of love at first sight – finding it superficial, improbable and irritating – but for the case of a…

The Page Turners

The Page Turners is a YA contemporary horror novel, and the first in a trilogy, by Kevin T. Johns.

Nate, Danny and Spenser are outcasts – and they’ve found that this is far more apparent and dangerous now that they are freshmen in high school.

Daily they are victims of ridicule and, at least in Nate’s case, violence. For Nate, his home life is not much better.

One of the only bright moments the friends look forward to is their self-made club – The Page Turners.

Essentially they meet in the library to discuss their mutual passion for fiction – whether literature, movies or television – and present their opinions and thoughts in an organized, official manner.

It’s during one of these meetings that Nate happens upon a strange book in the library – something old, handwritten and brimming with mystery. He’s sure that it is real magic – but when they speak the incantation they find in English – nothing happens.

…or does it?

The Page Turners is a quickly paced book that is easy and fast to …

City of Bones

City of Bones is the first book in the YA urban fantasy series The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare.

It’s just another night for Clary when she and her best friend Simon are hanging out at the Pandemonium Club in New York City – but when she happens across a strange scene that no one else seems to see, her life takes a turn for the otherworldly.

Trying to brush off the fact that no one else – including Simon – saw the teenagers with peculiar markings covering their skin talking to another teen they kept calling a “demon”, Clary returns home to an overprotective mother that is so upset that Clary is a little late that she wants to take the two of them away for the summer with family friend Luke.

Fuming, Clary finds solace with Simon – until she has another encounter with those mysterious teens and finds out they are Shadowhunters – warriors devoted to purging the earth of demons and keeping other not-fully-human creatures like vampires and werewolves in line.

When her mother disa…

The Well of Lost Plots

The Well of Lost Plots is the third book in the book lover’s fantasy series Thursday Next by Jasper Fforde.

Though it’s been said that these books stand well on their own – I still STRONGLY recommend reading them in order. That means The Eyre Affair first, Lost in a Good Book second and THEN The Well of Lost Plots.

To avoid any potential spoilers for the first two books, I also recommend not reading this review unless you’ve read the prior novels. Deal?

After burning some serious bridges at her Spec Ops-27 Literary Detective job, being pursued by the power-mad Goliath Corporation and continuing to carry the child of a husband that no longer exists, Thursday had to get away.

Where better to get away than inside a book?

Being one of the rare individuals that has entered BookWorld as a non-fictional character, Thursday has been granted permission to participate in the Character Exchange program – allowing a character in the unpublished Caversham Heights go on holiday while Thursday steps…

Angelic Upstart

Angelic Upstart is a YA contemporary fantasy – and third book in the Alex Trueman trilogy – by Martin Dukes.

To fully appreciate and enjoy this trilogy, I strongly recommend reading these books in order. First there is Caught in a Moment and then Worm Winds of Zanzibar.

If you haven’t read them yet, to prevent being spoiled – don’t read this review! Instead, click on those titles to begin reading about Alex Trueman’s adventures!

I’m trusting that the only bibliophiles still reading are caught up with the series…

Returning to normalcy is not as easy as you’d think.

Not for Alex.

After first spending a horrific, mind-bending time in the time-frozen world of Intersticia and then an alternate version of Zanzibar, not to mention the angelic realm of Elysium, normalcy is, well, boring…

Plus, he’s been encouraged to cease using his abilities.

While his friends adapt back to their reality, Alex struggles – and eventually gets involved with a mysterious, fascinating archangel named Nathaniel.

Lost in a Good Book

Lost in a Good Book is an adult fantasy, sci-fi, bibliophile’s dream by Jasper Fforde. It is also the second book in the Thursday Next series – the first of which was The Eyre Affair, read my review here.

Truly these books transcend genres and are just stunning achievements in creativity and surrealism.

I strongly, strongly recommend reading The Eyre Affair before Lost in a Good Book. Deal???

Thursday – renowned Special Operative in literary detection - is happily married and resting after a duel to the death with dangerous criminal and murderer Acheron Hades.

Yet the massive Goliath Corporation – with far too many strongholds in the government – has not forgotten how Thursday entered Jane Eyre to accomplish her feat. Nor have they forgotten to pursue the means of doing so themselves.

In order to blackmail Thursday into releasing one of their errant employees – Jack Schitt – from the The Raven, Goliath eradicates someone Thursday loves dearly – leaving her as the only remaining person…

The Rules of Survival

The Rules of Survival is a YA contemporary novel by Nancy Werlin.

A life of tension and walking on eggshells is all Matt and his younger sisters are used to as their daily lives dramatically shift with their mother’s violent, startling mood swings.

As the oldest, Matt has learned to attempt to pull the attention on him when their mother turns more erratically aggressive, but it does not always work. Sometimes Callie or the little one Emmy end up being the victims – either when he’s not there to stop her… or when she’s too determined to be distracted.

It’s a life of fear and survival – every second of every day.

When Matt sees a man named Murdoch protect a young child from an abusive father in a public place, a part of him soars with a hope he long thought was dead.

Could this man – this man that had the courage to stand up to that steely-eyed father – help them too?

Matt knows it’s time to take action…

It’s been a while since I’ve read a Nancy Werlin novel but my prior experiences hav…

Deviation

Deviation is the first book in the futuristic sci-fi YA series The Sophisticates by Christine Manzari.

Cleo is a Sophisticate – one of the children genetically engineered in the Program to combat terrorism since the both economically and murderously destructive Wormwood hit America 30 years ago, changing everything.

She’s a Vanguard – focused more on advanced academics to create a brighter economic future for the country one day. Sophisticates do not have family – they do not have control over their own lives – they are owned by the Program and are reminded of it constantly.

Yet Cleo is not content with this – and when she’s caught hacking into a Program computer system to try and learn more about her donors she gets very upset.

And when she gets upset… something bad happens. A dangerous, unexpected anomaly.

As much as Cleo tries to hide what happened, she’s sent to the Academy to switch from a Vanguard to a Mandate – the military branch of the Program, where Sophisticates are traine…